MINNEAPOLIS (AP/WCCO) — A blizzard has knocked out electricity to tens of thousands of people in the Northern Plains as a powerful storm system sweeps across the central U.S.

As of 2 p.m., about 13,000 customers in southern Minnesota, 5,500 customers in South Dakota, and 5,000 in the Twin Cities are without power, according to Xcel Energy.

Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy spokesman Matt Lindstrom says the main culprit of Thursday’s outages is snow and ice accumulating on power lines, combined with strong winds.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation posted a video to Twitter showing multiple downed power lines on Highway 59 south of Fulda, Minnesota.

Blizzard conditions in the region are expected to linger into early Friday. Lindstrom says crews are out working to restore power, and they’re used to dealing with bad weather conditions. Those experiencing outages are encouraged to report them here.

The blizzard is part of a storm system known as a “bomb cyclone” that’s slowly churning through the central U.S. for the second time in a month.

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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